CHAPEL HILL - 2017 ACC Player of the Year Justin Jackson will enter the NBA draft and sign with an agent, North Carolina's sports information department announced Thursday. Jackson was a first-team All-America selection last season and instrumental in leading UNC to its sixth national championship.
“I thank God, my coaches and teammates and the University of North Carolina for giving me this extraordinary opportunity,” says Jackson. “My family and I discussed my decision with Coach Williams and we agree that declaring for the NBA Draft is best for my career. I wouldn’t trade anything the last three years as a Tar Heel, especially getting the chance to win a national championship, which was unbelievable. I feel I made a good decision last year to come back for my junior year. That has put me in a much better position as a basketball player and a person. I’m proud to know I will always be a Tar Heel.”
Jackson led the Tar Heels in scoring this year at 18.3 points per game, set the UNC single-season record with 105 three-pointers, averaged a career-high 4.7 rebounds and was second on the team in assists with 113. He scored 731 points, second most in Williams’ 14 seasons as UNC’s head coach and tied for the fifth most in any season by a Tar Heel.
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“We’re excited for Justin and proud of the way he conducted himself each day in leading our team to a national championship,” says Tar Heel head coach Roy Williams. “Justin explored his draft options after his sophomore season but understood it was in his best interest to play another season of college basketball, and what a year it was for him and our team. He did what our coaches and the NBA people advised him to do – get stronger and work on making more shots. He responded by investing a tremendous amount of his time in the offseason and came back to school a bigger, better and more confident player."